Friday, February 28, 2014

Decatur Landmark to be Bulldozed - Hint: DQ

 (Looks like no one can save this Decatur landmark.... That's too bad because it was "THE" link from the other side of the tracks.)


Since 1985 Nisar Momin and his family have served Dairy Queen soft freeze cones, slaw dogs and other treats to Decatur-area residents. It was Momin’s first business when he arrived in the United States from India in 1984. He loves his connection to Decatur: “We stay connected with the community. Decatur is great, and the people who live in and around here are very good to us.”

The Dairy Queen building where they work has stood since 1954 near the intersection of E. Trinity Place and E. College Avenue. It is one of more than 5,600  American Dairy Queen stores worldwide, a wholly owned subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway. It also is one of the few remaining barn-shaped Dairy Queen franchises in Metro Atlanta.

In fact it is one of the few remnants of the fast-food, drive-up vernacular architecture that arose in postwar America as a way of capturing the attention of a young, car-crazed American society. You didn’t need to see a cowboy hat, redheaded clown, Kentucky colonel, or pizza pie spinner to know what was sold there. All you needed was a familiar silhouette of the buildings visible through the fog to know that it was an Arby’s, McDonald’s, KFC or Pizza Hut.
Photo by D.G.Whitefield for Next Stop...Decatur 

Decatur woman who posed as a Waffle House manager Arrested

Atlanta police say a Decatur woman who posed as a Waffle House manager and snatched $100 cash from the register on Wednesday returned to the Memorial Drive restaurant hours later to return the money.

But she got more than she bargained for as Katie Marie McCrary, 35, was arrested and booked into the DeKalb County jail on a misdemeanor charge of theft by taking.

According to Officer Kim Jones, shortly after 6 a.m. on Feb. 26, McCrary entered the Waffle House located at 2914 Memorial Drive dressed in a Waffle House uniform.
read more

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Agnes Scott Historic Image - Five Daughters of Generals

Yes, each of these Agnes Scott College students , Decatur GA. is the daughter of a U.S. Army General.
L to R:  Francis Brougher,Polly Frink,Julia Ann Patch,Betty Brougher and Barbara Frink.
April 30, 1942

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Kimball House Oysters are Tops

From Creative Loafing 

Get 'em while they're cold
  There's nothing like a good oyster. It is the perfect mix of mystery, sensuality, and humbleness, and shows the rewards of human curiosity.
 It's easy to imagine one of our ancestors spying a gull drop an oyster, watching it crack open to reveal its slippery form, and thinking, "I'm going to eat that. That looks good." As common as oyster bars are in the Northeast and Northwest, just five years ago, Atlanta's options for a chilly and slippery bite of the sea were sparse. There were a few reliable spots, including Fontaine's Oyster House (1026 1/2 N. Highland Ave., 404-872-0869) and C&S Seafood and Oyster Bar (3240 Cobb Parkway, 770-272-0999), but options were limited. Since then, Atlanta's oyster lovers have seen an explosion in restaurants serving a variety of well-sourced bivalves. Atlanta's biggest oyster champion is Kimball House (303 E. Howard Ave., Decatur, 404-378-3502). I was shocked at the breadth of the oyster menu when I first saw it. It is 20 deep with selections from everywhere imaginable. The menu offers tidy tasting notes next to each item so you can decide if you are in the mood for a briny, bready, or vegetal bite.
Read  more at
Photo credit: Next Stop...Decatur

Couple stumbles upon $10 million in rare coins in Calif


Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Earth Day Pirate Themed T-shirt Design Contest

 From Be Active Decatur
Back by popular demand ….the Earth Day Pirate Themed T-shirt Design Contest. Children in grades K-12 are encouraged to submit a design. Decatur’s Earth Day event will be held on Saturday, April 19 at the  Oakhurst Community Garden from 1 until 4 pm and is a collaboration between the City of Decatur and the Wylde Center.
The Grand Prize Entry will be on the 2014 Earth Day Celebration T-Shirt and all entries will be on display at the Decatur Library. The entry deadline is Tuesday, March 25, 5 pm and the winners will be notified on April 1.  All entries are due to the Wylde Center Offices at the Oakhurst Garden, 435 Oakview Road, Decatur, GA 30030 and must have a submission form attached to be included in the contest.
Prizes will be awarded at the 2014 Earth Day Celebration at the Oakhurst Garden at 1:30pm on April 19. The Oakhurst Garden of the Wylde Center is located at 435 Oakview Road, Decatur, GA 30030. Click here for the submission information. Additional questions? Contact
photo credit

Closing The Seen

The Seen Gallery located on Church Street for over 10 years is closing. Where will Pete the Cat go ?
You can read all about it at Decaturish

Monday, February 24, 2014

"Cabana Grill" Coming to Toco Hill

Addison, Texas-based Fiesta Restaurant Group Inc. is planning a second location of its newest concept, "Cabana Grill," at Toco Hill.   The restaurant would be built on the wooded parcel in front of Kroger, adjacent to the AAA Auto Care Center.  The parcel once had an old white house on it, but the house was demolished many years ago.  The parcel is owned by Bennett-Johnson Properties, LLP, descendants of the woman who lived in the former house.  

W. Clyde Shepherd III of Toco Hill Inc. has sought for many years to purchase the parcel and apparently his offer was lower than the family thinks the property is worth.  Toco Hill Shopping Center was developed in 1956 by William Clyde Shepherd Jr.   Shepherd III has reportedly refused to allow curb cuts from the parcel to Toco Hill Shopping Center, meaning that access to and from the restaurant would be exclusively via LaVista Road. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

Update on Candler Road Construction

Photo credit:
Business owners and operators on Candler Road will get an update on the ongoing construction on the corridor that has been snarling traffic and chasing customers away for almost a year.

DeKalb District Three Commissioner Larry Johnson is hosting the Business Owner Meeting meeting on Feb. 24 at the Scott Candler Library to discuss the construction projects.

“Representatives from DeKalb County and AGL will provide updates and answer questions,” he said.

Business owners along the corridor have been complaining about the lack of information about the projects.

The $7.1 million construction projects have been underway since last April. It includes the installation of underground water mains and gas lines.

When the underground work is done, Johnson said the road will be repaved and the cooridor beautified.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Brian Williams Raps

Name the Spot

Can you name this spot which is located in Decatur GA.?

Little Shop of Stories Receives Donation From James Patterson

James Patterson, one of the richest authors in the U.S., is following through on his promise last fall to donate $1 million out of his own pocket to independent bookstores across the nation. Patterson has already sent out the checks to the first group of stores (one of which was Little Shop of Stories), totaling $267,000.
In September, Patterson spoke with the Wall Street Journal and CBS This Morning to outline his plans, which include a spot on his site where readers can suggest stores that need his help. According to Publisher’s Weekly, Patterson also enlisted R.L. Stine, Kate DiCamillo and other authors, who suggested other stores for him to donate to.
Now, the first installment of donations is out in the mail. He’s sent a total of $267,000 to 54 stores. He also sent a grant to the Northern California Independent Booksellers Association to support its California Bookstore Day.
read more

Eye on Decatur - What the ...

 Decatur  GA
 What happened to this US Mail truck ?
Comment: Don't Tamper With the Property of the U.S. Mail

 "Neither rain, nor snow, nor sleet, nor hail shall keep the postmen from their appointed rounds".

Comment from jolomo:  I'm going to go out on a limb and say "fire". Hopefully not too much mail was lost!

Tour deCatur is Saturday March 15

Tour deCatur Road Race

 Sat, Mar 15, 2014 | 8:45AM - 11:00AM 

  • Early bird pricing ends after February 28! 
  • (and price goes up to $30 for all ages)

The Tour deCatur, now in its 12th year, gives participants the opportunity to run a 5k road race and/or a 1-mile fun run through neighborhoods of Decatur. This event started as a grassroots fundraiser for the Decatur Education Foundation and has grown into a community wide tradition with over 2500 participants. One registration fee allows participation in the 5k, 1 mile or Tot Trot. Funds raised by this event support the children and youth of Decatur by providing educational and enrichment opportunities.
  • 1-Mile Fun Run/Walk: 8:45am
  • 5K Road Race/Walk: 9:15am
  • Tot Trot (age 4 and under): 10am

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Google is Eyeing Decatur and other Metro Areas


If you're wondering why your company's IT guy is walking around giddy as can be, it's because
Google today announced that it's considering Atlanta and several other neighboring cities to expand its high-speed Internet and TV service called Fiber.

The service is roughly 100 times faster than your typical broadband connection and packages can start around $70 per month, which can be cheaper than some other providers. Fiber is already up and running in Provo, Utah, and Kansas City, Mo. Austin is next on the list of cities to receive the service. Here's a handy one-pager about Fiber.

The metro Atlanta cities under consideration are Atlanta, Avondale Estates, Brookhaven, College Park, Decatur, East Point, Hapeville, Sandy Springs, and Smyrna. Google hopes to announce its selection by the end of the year.
Read more

Decatur Dairy Queen is Closing after 30 Great Years........Maybe

They will be closed as of FEB 22, 2014. A sign in window says they will be back in the new development, but that may not be true. The owners and the City of Decatur are trying to work out a way to stay in Decatur, after all they have been in Decatur for 30 years.

Anonymous Comment: I'm hoping that the news isn't true. I loved the food as well as the staff at DQ. It was one of the best one's I've been to on Decatur Dairy Queen is Closing after 30 Great Years........Maybe

Monday, February 17, 2014

The Decatur Theatre Overlay 1940 and Today!/ll/33.774055,-84.296471/id/62905/info/sv/zoom/14/
This overlay shows where The Decatur Theatre once stood in the parking lot next to Eddie's Attic on N. McDonough St. --- 
And here is another one for those who remember Willie Bradford's Barber Shop on East College across from The Decatur Train Depot.(click to enlarge)

One of the First New Streetcars Arrived Today in Atlanta

 One of the first new streetcars arrived today in downtown Atlanta.

Photo  from
 From Atlanta Streetcar page.
"The initial route of the Atlanta Streetcar will connect the Centennial Olympic Park area to the Martin Luther King Jr. Historic Site. It is a unique effort by the Federal DOT, the City of Atlanta, the Atlanta Downtown Improvement District, and MARTA."


“The Merits of Art: An Expert Panel” @ Decatur Market & Gallery March 12


DATE: Wednesday, March 12, 2014
TIME: 6:00 p.m.
EVENT: “The Merits of Art: An Expert Panel”
COST: Free to attend (RSVP required for seating)
SPEAKERS: Howard Pousner, Catherine Fox

In an informal setting, speakers will discuss the various aspects of the subjective nature of art as well as the potential obstacles and opportunities for working artists. Patrick Dennis, President of the Atlanta Foundation for Public Spaces and owner of the Decatur Gallery will facilitate the discussion with the speakers, encouraging plenty of questions and answers.


Howard Pousner writes about arts, entertainment and attractions for the The Atlanta Journal--‐Constitution. For the last 30 years, he has covered nearly every cultural event held in metro Atlanta from the Olympics to the Rockettes. He also writes a blog for Access Atlanta online.

Catherine Fox is executive director, editor chief and art critic for ArtsATL, an online magazine for arts news and culture in metro Atlanta. Previously Ms. Fox was the art and architecture critic at The Atlanta Journal--‐Constitution for 27 years. She holds a master’s degree in art history from the University of Michigan. She was assistant curator of the Arts Festival of Atlanta’s 1981 Site Works Program, has written for ARTnews and other publications, and is a co--‐author of Noplaceness: Art in a Post--Urban Landscape.


The Decatur Market & Gallery is a co--‐operative gallery for emerging artists and unique artisans in metro Atlanta. Each month, the gallery hosts a free education program to benefit artists as well as hands--‐on workshops to develop techniques. The Gallery also hosts quarterly themed group exhibitions. The Gallery is sponsored by The Atlanta Foundation for Public Spaces.

To view the 2014 gallery event calendar online, visit

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Saturday, February 15, 2014

New Home Construction at 713 S. McDonough St.

 Decatur GA
--During construction at 713 S. McDonough St. ------FOR SALE   INFO HERE
Before construction at 713 S. McDonough St. Decatur GA
photo from google maps.
Wylie Roberts said...I personally am thrilled as every bigger, nicer, new, two-story house goes up in my neighborhood.
However, some have NOT wanted or liked these changes, and pushed for a new rule to be implemented in 2008. It is called the “Floor Area Ratio” (FAR) rule (not to be confused with the Lot Coverage Ratio rule).
Here is a summary of the rule: It governs how much you can add to or renovate your home. At first glance, it appears to be a reasonable rule that prevents “over building”, but in reality, there are already other rules that prevent this (such as the Lot Coverage Ratio, set backs, story limits, and height limits) and instead all it does is prevent reasonable and full use of all of your home, without any benefit to the “public good”. Total Lot coverage has always been limited to 40%. But the new FAR rule added in 2008 mandates that “total floor area” also be no more than this same number of square feet, and garage space and accessory buildings must be counted. This means that a building footprint that covers 30% of a lot (very typical for existing one-story homes) would hit 60% if a full second floor were added, which exceeds the 40% FAR limit. In order to add a full second story, your building footprint would have to be no more than 20% of your lot square footage, which very few homes are. A family should be able to not only add a full second story, but use the attic space under the roof over the second floor as well. Doing so has no detrimental impact to the environment and does not increase “impervious surface” on the property or contribute to run-off issues. To allow these reasonable things, the floor area ratio limit would need to be around 80%, not the absurdly restrictive 40%.
Here is the effect of this new rule:

It prevents many from being able to add a full second story

It hurts property values. One real estate agent estimated that the average home in Decatur would immediately be worth anywhere from $50,000 to $150,000 MORE if this rule were repealed.

A large number of existing homes already exceed the FAR limit. So this rule is arbitrary and capricious, and prevents families from improving their homes as much as many of their neighbors already have.

I have started an online petition at Change.Org to repeal or amend the rule.

Will you take 30 seconds to sign this petition right now?
 Here's the link:

Here is more from: Wylie Roberts:
Lot Coverage Ratio = amount of square ft. covered by house or driveway as a % of total lot square footage. It is set at 40% max, and always has been. This prevents excessive water runoff during rain and allows water to be absorbed by soil.
Floor Area Ratio = Total Square Footage of all enclosed space, on all floors, including an enclosed garage (except for basement space) as a % of total lot square footage.
Most homes are between 20% and 35 % lot coverage with the foot print of the main structure. Very few if any are under 20%.
So here is the problem:
Very common in Decatur is a 30% footprint two story home with a basement and partial use of attic space with a dormer or two.
This gives a floor square footage of 80% ( 30 for basement, 30 for first floor, and 20 for 2nd floor).
But a home right next door with the same size foot print (30%) and no basement can't even add a full second level or use any of the floor space under the attic.
So the rule creates special classes of homeowners with different rights as far as size of home they can have. Which is inherently unfair, and why I am seeking for the FAR rule to either be eliminated or modified to give 80% to EVERYONE, inclusive of basement and garage.
The irony is, that if square footage is so evil, without regard to lot coverage, why do we allow an exception for basements?
If home A can have a basement, why can't home B ,without a basement, have a comparable amount of space by adding a FULL second floor and/or using the space in their attic?
If you want to know why so many of the beautiful old bungalows are being torn down and replaced by new construction (with a basement), it is because that is the only way to get a reasonable amount of home square footage, which the FAR rule otherwise prevents.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Hey, What's the Hurry?

Decatur GA.
Hey, What's the Hurry ?  On East Trinty Place today a  Dekalb County Sheriff escorts a Prison Bus running red light with siren and blue lights flashing.
I guess I was in the right place at the right time to snap this photo.

Souper Jenny Opened Today in Decatur

Souper Jenny opened in Decatur today.
located at: 1 West Court Sq.
Learn more about Souper Jenny in this video with Kathie Lee & Hoda.

Will MARTA Catch up to BART & METRO

Maria Saporta
    Contributing Writer- Atlanta Business Chronicle

MARTA was one of three transit agencies built at the same time — BART in San Francisco and METRO in Washington, D.C.

Both BART and METRO today have about 100 miles of rail, but MARTA only has 48 miles — giving fuel to the argument that it is a skeletal system.

But if its up to MARTA General Manager Keith Parker the transit agency will re-enter into an expansion mode as soon as fiscally possible.
Full story
Photo credit bizjournals 

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Decatur Through the Years

Decatur  GA.
 circa 1955
 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. See more photos at ajc

Snow Day at Decatur Georgia's No. 1 Fire Station ... circa 1957

From: http://dlg.galileo.usg
Decatur GA firemen at Decatur Fire Station No. 1 in 1957.

Trapped in your House ? Why not watch a good snow movie.

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.

DeKalb to open two additional warming centers today

The DeKalb Emergency Management Agency announces two additional warming centers will open today at noon for those who need a temporary reprieve from the current weather conditions.

The two locations are:
Tucker Recreation Center, 4898 LaVista Road, Tucker
Gresham Park Recreation Center, 3113 Gresham Road, S.E., Atlanta.

This is in addition to the warming center at the DeKalb County Jail, 4415 Memorial Drive in Decatur, which is already available.

DeKalb County has not opened any overnight shelters at this time.

County administrative offices, including other parks and recreation facilities, senior centers, water billing offices, recorders court and other administrative divisions are closed today.

Power outages can be reported to Georgia Power at (888) 660-5890 for residential customers and (888) 655-5888 for commercial customers. Snapping Shoals EMC customers can call (770) 786-3484, press option “1”.


If you want to share your ice and/or snow photos send them in.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Decatur Customers Storm Intown Ace Hardware

-- From: ajc
By Ken Foskett

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Nearly 40 customers were lined up at Intown Ace Hardware on Scott Boulevard in Decatur by the time co-owner Tony Powers was ready to open at 8 a.m. Tuesday.

He sold four pallets of ice melt in an hour and seven minutes and by late afternoon had sold all his firewood, kerosene, lanterns and every sled in the store. Generators were also in demand, and Powers said he sold seven in two hours.

“It’s been bananas,” said Powers, who estimated he’d slept only eight of the past 48 hours getting ready for the customer onslaught. “The phone won’t stop ringing – which is a bad problem to have if you don’t have anything to sell.”

Gene Reiley of Decatur stopped by the store to buy small propane tanks to power a small heater that his mother might need if she loses power at her home in Tucker.

“I think she’ll be fine,” said Reiley. “But you never know. You have to stock up just in case.”

Lynda Twilley bought a portable Weber charcoal grill.

“I can eat out of a can if I need to,” said Twilley. “But I need hot water for tea.”

Firewood was selling out at many area stores. Ashley Serebrenik struck out at four before she found a few remaining bags of wood chunks at The Woodshed on Medlock Road in DeKalb County. “This is it,” she said.

The Woodshed’s Bill Godboldt said the establishment had completely sold out of all its seasoned firewood and pointed to a few bags of pecan and hickory chunks – usually used in smokers – as all that remained.

“We’re done,” said Godboldt. “It’s been non-stop for two days.”

Photo credit Google Maps